Portugal condemn Greece to first lossTuesday 17 November 2009
Portugal kept alive their hopes of reaching the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Championship with a 2-1 victory over Group 9 leaders Greece, who fell to their first defeat.
Portugal's chances looked slight after losing to England on Saturday, but they bounced back in commanding fashion thanks to second-half goals from Rui Pedro and Yazalde. Greece goalkeeper Nikos Babaniotis twice thwarted Yazalde before the break, but was beaten six minutes into the second half when Rui Pedro headed in captain Bruno Pereirinha's cross from the right. The goal brought Greece to life with Giannis Papadopoulos coming close, but they left themselves exposed as they pressed and Yazalde finished off a fine counter to double Portugal's advantage with 16 minutes to play.
The home side had further chances, but two goals proved enough despite substitute Elini Dimoutsos pulling one back for Greece in added time. Nikolaos Nioplias's side still lead the section by two points from England, who had earlier drawn with Lithuania, with Portugal four points further back in third. Both England and Portugal have a game in hand. The top two meet in March, before Portugal play Lithuania in August.
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